475 25th Street, Oakland CA 94612

Friday + Saturday: 12-5pm and by appt.

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Mary Curtis Ratcliff : What Goes Around Comes Around

April, 2017

Inkblot Tree
Inkblot Tree, 2016, digital inkjet print, paper, plexiglass, monofilament, 37" x 39" x 18" (photo by Dana Davis)

What Goes Around Comes Around is an extension Ratcliff‘s 2016 solo exhibition, Full Circle. Circular kinetic sculptures of various sizes and groupings are suspended from the ceiling. They are discs that carry imagery, mostLy derived from nature, and many of them are in perpetual motion. Inkblot Tree, 2016, and Electric Tree, 2016, are triptychs that continuously change as they turn on their vertical axes. As the ancient greek philosopher Heraclitus said, “the only constant is change.” It’s nature’s nature.

As a viewer observed, “It is an amazing dance between what is made and what is out there in nature. Now I’ll see things that I might not have seen before when I looking at water and trees. How the familiar becomes so surprising and surprising things become familiar. Each work is an adventure, a discovery, an expedition.”www.marycurtisratcliff.com

Mary Curtis Ratcliff studied sculpture at the Rhode Island School of Design in the 1960s, and then moved to New York, where she was a founding member of the avant garde collective Videofreex. By the 1970s she had migrated to the more forgiving climate and open atmosphere of San Francisco.

In California, Ratcliff’s wind sculptures and ceremonial pieces were used in the early eco-feminist movement; later works continued to unite fabric and craft with a sculptural sense of design. Since 1999, Ratcliff has concentrated increasingly on 2-dimensional work, integrating photography, drawing, painting, and image transfer techniques in multi-layered, intricate explorations of nature, pattern and perception.

Over the last two years, she has come full circle and is once again creating kinetic sculptures, suspended from the ceiling. These works extend the photographic nature-based imagery that she has been exploring, even as they create new relationships of perception through juxtaposition and rotation of forms.

Ratcliff’s artwork has been shown in well over a hundred exhibitions around the world; it is represented locally in the collections of the Oakland Museum of California and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco; and she has participated in residencies in the United States, France, Japan, and New Zealand. She lives and works in Berkeley, CA and is a member of Oakland’s Mercury 20 Gallery, SFMOMA Artist’s Gallery and Mythos Fine Art and Artifacts.



Mercury 20 Gallery

475 25th Street, Oakland CA 94612
Tel: 510-701-4620

Gallery hours: Friday + Saturday: 12-5pm and by appt